Trio La Mer

Trio La Mer, the Outer Banks premier string and piano ensemble, was formed in 2006. Since then, they have performed regularly for recitals, social gatherings, and charity events throughout the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

All three players in the ensemble teach music in Dare County schools. Each has received advanced performance training on their instruments. As individuals, they have collectively performed professionally in the mid-Atlantic region for over 60 years.

The mission of Trio La Mer is to foster a greater appreciation and love of classic piano trio music by presenting free public concerts that educate, enlighten and entertain audiences on the Outer Banks. Their recital repertoire ranges from light classics to ragtime, and from Bach to Beethoven with an occasional tango or two.

Trio la Mer is:

  Jsm_bufordohn Buford received a Masters in Music from Morehead State University (Kentucky) where he studied as a piano major. His academics focused on both piano and vocal performance and education. He has performed in both fields as soloist, ensemble, and accompanist throughout the Tidewater area and North Eastern North Carolina. From 1995-2005 he worked as music director at several churches in Tidewater, Virginia. As a vocalist, his appearances include performances with the Bel Canto Italia Opera Festival in Rome, Italy; the Virginia Opera; Virginia Symphony Chorus; Virginia Beach Symphony Orchestra; Norfolk Art Song Society; and the Carolina Choral in Edenton, North Carolina. As a pianist, he instituted and performed as soloist and accompanist in the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Recital Series in Newport News, Virginia. John currently teaches elementary music at First Flight Elementary in Kill Devil Hills and works part-time as PR and Marketing Director at The Lost Colony in Manteo, North Carolina.

Lsm_leslieeslie Erickson, violin earned a Bachelor of Music Education Degree from East Carolina University and a Master of Music in Violin Performance from Ithaca College in New York. She has been playing the violin for 20 years – years of local orchestras, chamber music, solo recitals, weddings and fiddling.  Leslie is the owner of Club Violin and the contact person for booking weddings and events.


Ssm_sueue Waters, viola is a graduate of the University of Maryland, majoring in music education. She has played in freelance groups in the Washington, DC area at the Kennedy Center and Wolf Trap. She has been in the Pensacola, Virginia, Corpus Christi and Maryland Symphonies. Currently, Sue is the media specialist at Manteo High School, she teaches the strings program at Manteo Middle School and performs with Trio La Mer.